Four Steps to an Income-Earning Vacation Property

If you own a home in Orlando and are looking to convert it to a money-making vacation rental, it can feel like a big project. Fortunately, there are ways to streamline the process, cut down on frustration, and start earning an investment income from your current home.
Ready to start preparing your property for vacationers? Check out these ideas from the Zembala Group.
Make Cost-Effective Upgrades
Vacation properties with modern amenities often fetch the highest rental price. If your home is a bit dated or could use a few cosmetic upgrades, consider making improvements before listing it.
Not every renovation will be cost-effective, so consider the return on investment before making any changes. For example, a vacation rental may not need a state-of-the-art kitchen if tons of highly-rated restaurants are in the neighborhood.
On the other hand, a smart kitchen is appealing to travelers, so technology could be a worthwhile expense. Other projects like a spa-like bathroom upgrade could be a perk for guests who are looking to ‘get away.’
You might find that improvements like swapping carpet for vinyl plank flooring make the home look nicer while also ensuring it’s cleaner for each booking. After all, carpet can contain around 200,000 bacteria per square inch – something your vacationers will not appreciate.
Research other Orlando homes and scope out their amenities to determine which upgrades are worth tackling.
Learn to Be a Marketer
Though you may expect your property to sell itself, that’s not always the case with vacation rentals. The property must be spotless and have all the modern features visitors expect. But you may also need a bit of a marketing perspective to promote the property at the right price point.
For example, you’ll want to start with high-quality real estate photos. Dark, shadowy, blurry shots that make the home look small or outdated can ruin your chances of earning an income.
In contrast, professional real-estate grade photographs will show off the property’s best angles in an honest way. This ensures that potential renters can see whether the house fits their needs.
You’ll need to market the house in other ways, too. You might list the property on vacation rental sites, advertise on social media, and even collaborate with local tourist agencies or other vacation rental owners.
Of course, you don’t have to go it alone.
Hire a Manager to Help
One option for managing (and marketing) your Orlando vacation rental is to use a vacation management company. Management companies are familiar with the ins and outs of investment properties, and their expertise could prove invaluable.
For one thing, a property manager will maintain bookings and update the calendar. With appropriate scheduling, guests are happy, and you’re maximizing your earnings. Vacation rental managers also schedule professional cleanings in between guest visits, provide 24/7 support for your renters, and handle all the miscellaneous issues that can crop up during their stay.
If you prefer a hands-off approach to managing your rental, enlisting the help of a management professional is an excellent step toward a streamlined ownership and ‘landlord’ experience.
Protect Yourself Legally
Another crucial factor in preparing your home for vacationers is to cover your bases legally and financially. Because you own the property you’re renting out, you could be liable if something goes wrong while guests stay there.
To protect your assets in the event of litigation – as unlikely as that hopefully is – consider your options. One way to separate your investment property from personal property is by establishing a limited liability company. Your vacation rental business can use an LLC formation, which provides tax advantages and other protections.
You can hire a lawyer to form an LLC, but that’s a pricey option ahead of filling your Orlando vacation rental for its first holiday weekend! Instead, consider using a formation service to register your Florida LLC to save money while avoiding the missteps that a DIY process may involve.
Renting out your home to vacationers can be stress-inducing – but done right, it can serve as a steady source of income. By taking these simple steps, you can avoid the frustration of becoming a landlord without missing out on a lucrative opportunity.
Are you thinking about buying a new home or investing in a second home as a vacation rental? Contact Zembala Group today!
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